WBEZ | http://www.wbez.org/tags Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Steve Jobs Has Died; Apple Co-Founder Was 56 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/steve-jobs-has-died-apple-co-founder-was-56-92878 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/npr_story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-05/jobs.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Steve Jobs, the visionary who co-founded Apple, left the company, and then returned to build it into a global powerhouse, has died at age 56, according to the company.</p><p>Jobs had been fighting pancreatic cancer for several years — a battle that forced him to take several extended breaks from his duties as Apple's CEO. He resigned from that post on Aug. 24, 2011.</p><p>In a <a href="http://www.apple.com/stevejobs/">statement on its website</a>, the technology firm said:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and inspiring mentor. Steve leaves the company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.</p><p></blockquote> <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317859135?&gn=Steve+Jobs+Has+Died%3B+Apple+Co-Founder+Was+56&ev=event2&ch=103943429&h1=The+Two-Way,Technology,Business,U.S.,Home+Page+Top+Stories,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141096090&c7=1019&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1019&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=103943429&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 18:49:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/steve-jobs-has-died-apple-co-founder-was-56-92878 Apple Visionary Steve Jobs Dies At 56 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/apple-visionary-steve-jobs-dies-56-92879 <p><p>Steve Jobs — the man who brought us the iPhone, the iPod and the iMac — has died. The co-founder of Apple was 56 years old. Jobs had been battling a rare form of pancreatic cancer for years.</p><p>"It boggles the mind to think of all the things that Steve Jobs did," says Silicon Valley venture capitalist Roger McNamee, who worked with Jobs.</p><p>McNamee says that in addition to introducing us to desktop publishing and computer animated movies, Jobs should be credited with creating the first commercially successful computer.</p><p>"Any one of those would have qualified him as one of the great executives in American history," McNamee says, "the sum of which put him in a place where no one else has ever been before. To me he is of his era what Thomas Edison was to the beginning of the 20th century."</p><p>Jobs was just 21 when he co-founded Apple Computer in his garage in Cupertino, Calif., in 1976. The following year, when Jobs and his partner, Steve Wozniak, released the compact Apple II, most computers were big enough to fill a university basement or came from do-it-yourself kits for hobbyists with soldering irons.</p><p>With sound and cutting-edge color graphics, Apple II was the first blockbuster desktop computer. Users could hook it up to their TV sets to play games, and its spreadsheet program made it popular with small businesses.</p><p>"It made Apple the biggest computer manufacturer in the nascent computer industry," says Leander Kahney, author of <em>Inside Steve's Brain.</em></p><p>But in 1981, Apple got its first taste of serious competition, when IBM released its own personal computer. IBM had the advantage of a well-known, trusted name, and Jobs — a California boy — loathed the kind of conformist East Coast culture it represented.</p><p>So he countered with the Macintosh, the first computer to feature a mouse, pull-down menus and icons — thus eliminating the command-line interface.</p><p>"Jobs' idea was that we'll make it easy enough that anybody can do it ... a grandmother, a kid, people who don't have any experience," Kahney says. The Mac was an example of the kind of product that would come to define Jobs' entire career: easy-to-use computers.</p><p>That's the message Jobs sent to millions when he released the Mac in 1984. <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYecfV3ubP8">In an ad that aired once</a> during the Super Bowl, a woman dressed in brightly colored shorts runs into a room of gray-looking people and throws a sledgehammer at a screen where Big Brother — read IBM — is talking. The minute-long reference to George Orwell's <em>1984</em> became one of the most famous television commercials of all time.</p><p>It also illustrated Jobs' belief that computers were tools to unleash human creativity. In an interview for the 1996 PBS documentary <em>Triumph of the </em><em>Nerds, </em>Jobs said, "Part of what made the Macintosh great was that the people working on it were musicians and poets and artists and zoologists and historians who also happened to be the best computer scientists in the world."</p><p>In many ways Jobs was the poet of the computer world. He'd gone to India and become a Buddhist. He took LSD and believed it had opened his mind to new ways of thinking.</p><p>But Jobs' iconoclastic ideals did not always make him easy to work with.</p><p>"He was just a terrible manager and a terrible executive," says Trip Hawkins, the marketing director of Apple until 1982. "At that point in time I never really thought that he could be a CEO."</p><p>Jobs was eventually fired in a 1985 boardroom coup led by John Sculley — the man Jobs himself had hired to be CEO of Apple. But Jobs was driven to make computers vehicles for creativity, and after he left Apple, he purchased a little-known division of Lucas film and renamed it Pixar.</p><p>In 1995, Pixar released the first animated feature to be done entirely on computers. That film, <em>Toy</em><em> Story,</em> was a huge success, and Pixar followed it with other big hits including <em>Monsters, Inc., The Incredibles</em> and <em>Finding Nemo</em>.</p><p>But Apple didn't exactly thrive in the years after Jobs' departure. With less than 5 percent of the computer market in its possession and analysts predicting the company's demise, the board invited Jobs to come back and run his old business.</p><p>In 1998, as interim CEO of Apple, Jobs introduced the iMac and once again helped remake the computer industry. According to venture capitalist McNamee, the iMac was the first computer made to harness the creative potential of the Internet.</p><p>"The iMac reflected the transition of consumers from passive consumption of content to active creation of entertainment," McNamee says. "People could write their own blogs, make their own digital photographs and make their own movies. Apple made all the tools to make that easy and they did at a time when Microsoft just wasn't paying attention."</p><p>Three years after the iMac, Jobs announced Apple's expansion into the music industry with a breakthrough MP3 player — the iPod.</p><p>"This is not a speculative market," he said as he introduced the iPod in 2001. "It's a part of everyone's life. It's a very large target market all around the world."</p><p>The iPod was a classic Jobs product — easy to use and nice to look at. Apple sold tens of millions of iPods, and the iTunes store became the No. 1 music retailer.</p><p>Six years later, Apple released the iPhone — a device whose elegance and user friendliness blew other phone/music players out of the water.</p><p>In 2010, Apple created yet another groundbreaking device with the introduction of the iPad. With its color touch-screen, the tablet gave users the ability to surf the Web, send e-mail, watch videos and read e-books.</p><p>Book publishers weren't the only ones to embrace the new tablet. A host of magazines, newspapers and broadcast news organizations, including <em>The New Yorker</em>, <em>The Wall Street Journal </em>and NPR, created iPad-specific apps that helped showcase stories — and images — in a tabloid-style layout.</p><p>And in January 2011, Apple reached a milestone by surpassing 10 billion downloads from its App Store — a sign of just how popular the company's devices have become with consumers.</p><p>"Simplifying complexity is not simple," says Susan Rockrise, a creative director who worked with Jobs. "It is the greatest, greatest gift to have someone who has Steve's capabilities as an editor and a product designer edit the crap away so that you can focus on what you want to do."</p><p>Rockrise believes Jobs touched pretty much anyone who has ever clicked a mouse, sent a photo over the Internet, published a book from a home computer or enjoyed portable music or a computer-animated movie.</p><p>She says they all have Jobs to thank for making it happen. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317859137?&gn=Apple+Visionary+Steve+Jobs+Dies+At+56&ev=event2&ch=1062&h1=Music+News,Remembrances,Digital+Life,Technology,Business,U.S.,Home+Page+Top+Stories,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=123826622&c7=1062&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1062&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 18:44:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/apple-visionary-steve-jobs-dies-56-92879 Palin Says She Will Not Run For President In 2012 Election http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/palin-says-she-will-not-run-president-2012-election-92876 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/npr_story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-05/palin_wide.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin will not be adding her name to the pool of candidates running for U.S. president in 2012, according to reports. In a <a href="http://marklevinshow.com/Article.asp?id=2303165&spid=32364">statement provided to the Mark Levin radio show</a>, Palin said, "I have decided that I will not be seeking the 2012 GOP nomination for president of the United States."</p><p>In the statement, read on air by Levin, Palin went on to say that she and her husband, Todd, had considered the matter and decided that not competing for the nomination was the best move for their family.</p><p>"My decision is based upon a review of what common-sense conservatives and independents have accomplished, especially over the last year. I believe that at this time, I can be more effective in a decisive role to help elect other true public servants to office, from the nation's governors and congressional seats to the presidency."</p><p>After Levin read the statement, he spoke with Palin via telephone — and asked her if perhaps her decision leaves open the possibility that she would seek a third-party nomination.</p><p>But Palin dispelled that idea, saying, "I would assume that a third party would just guarantee Obama's election, and that's the last thing that our republic can afford."</p><p>We'll have more updates and reaction about this news. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317855535?&gn=Palin+Says+She+Will+Not+Run+For+President+In+2012+Election&ev=event2&ch=103943429&h1=Presidential+Race,Election+2012,The+Two-Way,Around+the+Nation,Politics,U.S.,Home+Page+Top+Stories,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141094625&c7=139482413&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=139482413&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=103943429&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 17:33:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/palin-says-she-will-not-run-president-2012-election-92876 Currying Danger: Restaurant's Spice Contest Puts Two In Hospital http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/currying-danger-restaurants-spice-contest-puts-two-hospital-92875 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/npr_story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-05/naga_chili_wide.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A Scottish restaurant's competition to see who could eat the spiciest curry — and raise money for charity in the process — has ended in painful trips to the emergency room for at least two participants.</p><p>The <a href="http://www.kismot.co.uk/">Kismot</a> restaurant of Edinburgh, which serves Indian and Bangladeshi food, challenged competitors to eat its hottest curry. At least 20 people answered the bell. But problems became evident almost as soon as participants began eating the curry.</p><p>As the competitors started in on their dishes, half of the 20 people who took part in the challenge had dropped out after witnessing the first 10 diners vomiting, collapsing, sweating and panting," <a href="http://www.scotsman.com/news/Hot-chilli-challenge-puts-two.6848035.jp">reports <em>The Scotsman</em></a>.</p><p>By the time the remaining contenders reached the final bowl, dubbed the "Kismot Killer," the spice had become even more extreme, and it was clear that any victory would be of the Pyrrhic variety.</p><p>American Curie Kim, an exchange student attending Edinburgh University, came in second. She <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-15183070">described the ordeal for the BBC</a>:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>"The woman who won ate the last bowl in four seconds and then ran outside to be sick, whereas I didn't. So I've learned I should have had a game plan like that," she said.</p><p>"There were three rounds and I managed half of the last bowl.</p><p>"I was in so much pain I wasn't aware of what was going on around me and when I got to hospital they gave me medicine for the indigestion."</p><p></blockquote></p><p><em>The Scotsman</em> reports that all competitors signed a legal disclaimer before eating the curry, "and two members of the British Red Cross were on hand, but they could not cope with the nature of the injuries sustained."</p><p>The BBC spoke to the man who arranged the contest:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>Organizer Abdul Ali said: "The British Red Cross we had on board could not cope. We put our hands up. We did have to call the emergency services for a couple of our participants."</p><p>Mr Ali said he regretted that the services had to be called out on a busy Saturday.</p><p>He said all participants were now "fit and well" and more than £1,000 was raised for charity.</p><p></blockquote></p><p>Proceeds from the event were donated to CHAS, the Children's Hospice Association of Scotland.</p><p>The restaurant's website has evidently exceeded its allotted bandwidth, so I turned to <a href="http://www.yelp.co.uk/biz/kismot-edinburgh">Yelp UK</a> to learn more. Kismot has a 4.5-star rating out of 5 stars, based on seven reviews. And one satisfied customer confirms that at Kismot, they don't just bring the heat out for charity events:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>We were offered the chance to endure 'Scotland's hottest curry' in a bid to make it to the Kismot Hall of Fame, I'm a curry lover but that was an offer I put off till another day. However, there was a table beside us who took the challenge, we all shared in congratulating a very satisfied if a little hot under the collar guest who had made it to the famous Kismot Hall of Fame.</p><p></blockquote> <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317851965?&gn=Currying+Danger%3A+Restaurant%27s+Spice+Contest+Puts+Two+In+Hospital&ev=event2&ch=103943429&h1=Food,Foreign+News,Scotland,The+Two-Way,Europe,World,Home+Page+Top+Stories,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141092344&c7=1053&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1053&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=129009726,127602464,126801129,103943429&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 16:45:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/currying-danger-restaurants-spice-contest-puts-two-hospital-92875 Occupy Wall Street Gets Union Backing; Approval Rating Tops Congress http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/occupy-wall-street-gets-union-backing-approval-rating-tops-congress-92867 <p><p>Occupy Wall Street is getting a shot in the arm, as some of America's largest unions have announced that they're now supporting the movement. The gain in momentum comes as off-shoots of the original Manhattan group plan marches and protests around the nation.</p><p>The AP notes the group's fast growth into a movement:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>The protests began two and a half weeks ago with a few dozen demonstrators who tried to pitch tents in front of the New York Stock Exchange. Since then, hundreds have set up camp in a park nearby and have become increasingly organized, lining up medical aid and legal help and printing their own newspaper.</p><p></blockquote></p><p>And in a sign of technical sophistication, the group also has its own Bitcoin address, where it's accepting donations. Wednesday, protests inspired by Occupy Wall Street led to protests in cities from Dayton, Ohio, to San Francisco, Calif.</p><p>And in New York City, the group is marching on Wall Street once again today — a <a href="http://occupywallst.org/">notice on its website</a> says that at 4:30 p.m. ET, "the 99% will march in solidarity with #occupywallstreet from Foley Square to the Financial District, where their pensions have disappeared to, where their health has disappeared to."</p><p>The group has attracted some mockery, largely for its members' proclivity for dressing up like zombies. But a <a href="http://www.slate.com/blogs/weigel/2011/10/05/poll_occupy_wall_street_starts_off_with_favorable_ratings.html">new Rasmussen poll</a> finds that the group enjoys a higher approval rating (33 percent) than does Congress (14 percent).</p><p>Perhaps sensing a groundswell of opinion, <a href="http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1011/65229.html">several key Democrats</a> have endorsed the group, including former Sen. Russ Feingold and Rep. John Larson, who called it a sign of a coming <a href="http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/996099ee-eea7-11e0-959a-00144feab49a.html#axzz1ZvtrALUG">"American autumn"</a> — a reference to the Arab Spring protests that have reshaped parts of the Middle East.</p><p>And like their Arab counterparts, the key members of Occupy Wall Street seem to be young people frustrated by a lack of opportunity, and angered by the disparity between a suffering middle class and the wealthiest citizens — as personified, here in America, by Wall Street bankers.</p><p>Just as the Tea Party movement has refused to join the Republican rank and file, the political establishment may also have a hard time assimilating Occupy Wall Street's grassroots energy. Or, as <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/post/why-occupy-wall-street-and-democrats-arent-natural-allies/2011/10/05/gIQAYuvyNL_blog.html"><em>The Washington Post's</em> James Downie</a> writes, "at least not without Democrats renouncing the influence Wall Street holds on them, as well."</p><p>From the Occupy Wall Street site, here's a partial list of the union groups that announced their support Wednesday:</p><p><ul></p><p><li>AFL-CIO (AFSCME)</li></p><p><li>United NY</li></p><p><li>Strong Economy for All Coalition</li></p><p><li>Working Families Party</li></p><p><li>TWU Local 100</li></p><p><li>SEIU 1199</li></p><p><li>CWA 1109</li></p><p><li>RWDSU</li></p><p><li>Communications Workers of America</li></p><p><li>CWA Local 1180</li></p><p><li>United Auto Workers</li></p><p><li>United Federation of Teachers</li></p><p><li>Professional Staff Congress - CUNY</li></p><p><li>National Nurses United</li></p><p><li>Writers Guild East</li></p><p></ul> <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317848340?&gn=Occupy+Wall+Street+Gets+Union+Backing%3B+Approval+Rating+Tops+Congress&ev=event2&ch=103943429&h1=Occupy+Wall+Street,National+News,Economy,protests,The+Two-Way,Around+the+Nation,Politics,U.S.,Home+Page+Top+Stories,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141089001&c7=1091&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1091&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=140847403,127602855,127602331,126976013,103943429&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 15:18:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/occupy-wall-street-gets-union-backing-approval-rating-tops-congress-92867 Gap Grows Between Military, Civilians On War http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/gap-grows-between-military-civilians-war-92869 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/npr_story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-05/afghanistan_7646229_wide.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>As the U.S. marks the 10th anniversary of its involvement in the Afghan war this week, a Pew Research Center report shows some wide differences between the way military members and the general public view the fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq.</p><p>Pew researchers talked to nearly 4,000 people, split almost evenly between military veterans and civilians. Paul Taylor, the editor of the study, said he wanted to explore this unique moment in American history.</p><p>"We've never had sustained combat for a full decade, and we've never fought a war in which such a small share of the population has carried the fight," he says.</p><p>Just one-half of 1 percent of the American population has served on active duty during the last decade. That compares to the 9 percent who wore the uniform during World War II.</p><p>Overall, Americans still hold the military in the highest regard. It towers above organized religion, big business and Congress.</p><p>But signing up for the military is another matter. More than 80 percent of veterans would recommend a military career to a young person close to them. Among civilians, that number drops to about half that.</p><p><strong>Attitude Toward Military Service</strong></p><p>Civilians are much more ambivalent toward military service.</p><p>"They recognize that here are burdens borne and frankly they don't necessarily want their kith and kin and folks close to them to bear those burdens," Taylor says.</p><p>"There is a gap. Whether or not this is a good or bad thing is in effect, frankly, above my pay grade. It's an interesting question," he says .</p><p>When veterans were asked that question, eight in 10 say the American public doesn't understand the problems faced by those in the military or their families.</p><p>The civilians polled acknowledge that soldiers and their families make a lot of sacrifices. But only one-quarter see that as unfair. A large majority of civilians see it as "just being part of the military."</p><p>Another sign of disconnect is that the public isn't paying much attention to Afghanistan or Iraq. About 25 percent say they are following the wars closely; that figure has dropped in half from a few years ago.</p><p>That comes as no surprise to some service members, such as Marine Sgt. Jon Moulder. He was patrolling in Afghanistan in June when he spoke with NPR about the lack of interest back home in his mission.</p><p>"We're starting to fall to the wayside. This has been going on for so long. It's America's longest conflict running to date. Kind of like the bastard children of our generation," he said.</p><p>Moulder is part of a small fraction of Americans who serve, and that troubles Martin Cook, a civilian professor of military ethics at the Naval War College.</p><p>"It becomes much more easy to deploy U.S. forces in tough environments for long periods of time because the vast majority of Americans don't feel they have any skin in the game. I've often speculated could we have fought wars for 10 years if this was a draftee army and I doubt it," he says.</p><p><strong>Attitudes Toward Afghanistan, Iraq<br /></strong></p><p>The strategy of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is also a cause for disagreement between the civilians and veterans polled.</p><p>Both groups differ on the question of nation-building, which entails everything from constructing schools in Iraq and Afghanistan to training and equipping their militaries. Fifty-nine percent of veterans support this, compared to just 45 percent of the civilians polled.</p><p>The Pew Center's Taylor says civilians likely focus on the billions of dollars spent to rebuild places like Afghanistan. Troops focus less on the money and more on the results.</p><p>"The troops who are actually over there see the value of the military strategy, that one goes hand in hand with the other," he says.</p><p>And the troops likely see nation-building as a faster way home from war, a war that even veterans are growing tired of, according to the Pew study.</p><p>"It is notable that the warriors after 10 years of battle are ambivalent at best about the whole enterprise they've been engaged in," he says.</p><p>About one-third of veterans say neither war was worth fighting. Nearly half of civilians say that. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317848335?&gn=Gap+Grows+Between+Military%2C+Civilians+On+War&ev=event2&ch=1122&h1=Afghanistan,National+Security,Around+the+Nation,World,U.S.,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141084358&c7=1122&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1122&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c21=2&v21=D%3Dc2&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 15:09:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/gap-grows-between-military-civilians-war-92869 Undercover School Lunch Blogger 'Mrs. Q' Reveals Herself http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/undercover-school-lunch-blogger-mrs-q-reveals-herself-92868 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/npr_story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-05/schoollunch_wide.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>School lunch is a topic of endless fascination here at The Salt and, really, wherever parents of school age children compare notes. If we don't have time to pack their lunch, what exactly are the 32 million kids, including ours, eating?</p><p>Well, the secret of what's on the <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2010/04/americans_want_revolution_in_s.html">lunch tray</a> has been out for some time in Chicago Public Schools, thanks to a blog called <a href="http://fedupwithlunch.com/">Fed Up With Lunch</a>, and now the whole world knows who's been behind it.</p><p><em>Good Morning America</em> <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/mrs-revealed-undercover-school-mission-14671502">unmasked</a> the secret identity of "Mrs. Q" today — it's Sarah Wu, a school speech pathologist by day, anonymous mommy food blogger with a vengeance by night.</p><p></p><p>The <em>Chicago Tribune</em> <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/ct-met-undercover-school-lunch-20111005,0,2935446.story">says</a> she doesn't look like a troublemaker. "The slight, blond mom comes off, by her own admission, as 'a super nice person ... without a bad word to say,'" the paper says.</p><p>And yet, every day for a year she bought the school's lunch, secretly snapped a cell phone pic, and registered her anonymous surprise by how many packaged, processed products she found, and how short the lunch periods were.</p><p>Blog of the Nation culled some of her more <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/talk/2010/04/school_lunches_of_course_the_f.html">candid observations</a> last year:</p><p><blockquote></p><p>Meals like "chicken nuggets, carrots, corn muffin, fruit jello, milk" inspire commentary like this,</p><p>I can't remember how this meal tasted. Even just a couple hours after I consumed it, I have no idea what flavors were present. I don't remember a texture jumping out at me. When I ask my students "What did you think of your lunch?" they give me a blank stare. Now I get it.</p><p></blockquote></p><p>It all started when Wu forgot to pack her lunch one day. What she says she saw? "It was barely recognizable as food," she tells GMA.</p><p>Like for example, she says she found out that many chicken nuggets were just 50 percent chicken. (If you're squeamish about how they're made, don't click <a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/chicken-nuggets-are-made-of-this-pink-goop-2010-10">here</a>.)</p><p>Not surprisingly, the school system appeared a bit blindsided. "Our nutritional standards are designed to exceed USDA's," Chicago Public Schools says in a statement in response to the reveal today.</p><p>Wu says she has no idea what the reaction will be when she gets back to work. "I'm hoping for the best," Wu says.</p><p>But it may not matter that much. She'll be on Nightline tonight, telling more of her story and promoting the book she just wrote called, you guessed it, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1452102287/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=eatirule-20&linkCode=as2&camp=217145&creative=399373&creativeASIN=1452102287">Fed Up With Lunch</a>. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317848341?&gn=Undercover+School+Lunch+Blogger+%27Mrs.+Q%27+Reveals+Herself&ev=event2&ch=139941248&h1=The+Salt,nutrition,school+lunch,Fitness+%26+Nutrition,Health,Your+Health,Food,Children%27s+Health,U.S.,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141086013&c7=1066&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1066&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=139941248,135838267,135838264&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 15:08:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/undercover-school-lunch-blogger-mrs-q-reveals-herself-92868 Rubio's Veep Prospects Could Be Fueling Boycott Of GOP Debate http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/rubios-veep-prospects-could-be-fueling-boycott-gop-debate-92864 <p><p>A dispute involving Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and the nation's largest Spanish-language TV network, Univision, has spilled over into the presidential primary. At least five Republican presidential candidates say they will not take part in a debate planned by Univision in January, before the Florida primary.</p><p>According to the <a href="http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/10/01/2434296/the-inside-story-univisions-war.html" target="_blank">Miami Herald</a>, the story began in July when Univision was preparing a story on Rubio's brother-in-law, who was convicted of drug trafficking 24 years ago — when Rubio was 16.</p><p>Rubio's staff contacted the network to try to convince them not to do the story. It's old news, they said — nothing to do with Sen. Rubio, but hurtful to his family.</p><p></p><p>Univision, as the nation's largest Hispanic network, plays an important role for candidates — giving them unrivalled access to Spanish-speaking voters. One of the network's anchors, <a href="http://www.jorgeramos.com/" target="_blank">Jorge Ramos</a>, is an outspoken advocate of the federal Dream Act, a bill Rubio opposes. Rubio has turned down requests to appear on the program.</p><p>In a conference call, Rubio staffers say Univision's president of news, Isaac Lee, said he would consider softening the story — or pulling it altogether — if Rubio would agree to appear on Ramos' talk show.</p><p>Univision says Lee never made such an offer. The Herald says its story was confirmed both by Rubio staff and insiders at the TV network.</p><p>After seeing the story, three Republican officials — all Rubio friends — wrote a letter to Univision, asking the network to apologize and fire Lee. They also called on the Republican party and its presidential candidates to boycott a debate the network was planning to hold before the Florida primary.</p><p>One of the officials is the majority leader in Florida's House of Representatives, Carlos Lopez-Cantera. He says, "It's about a news organization threatening to run a story that is irrelevant or embarrassing in order to coerce or motivate somebody to participate in an interview or appear on a show on their network."</p><p>By Wednesday, several Republican candidates — including Texas Gov. <a href="http://media.miamiherald.com/smedia/2011/10/04/13/22/1cQKNF.So.56.pdf" target="_blank">Rick Perry</a>, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and businessman Herman Cain — said they would not take part in the Univision debate.</p><p>Rubio — the man at the center of the dispute — has been mentioned as a possible pick for vice president.</p><p>Lopez-Cantera says he expects Hispanic voters will still have an opportunity to hear from the Republican presidential candidates. Another Hispanic network, Telemundo, is working with NBC to set up its own debate before the Florida primary, now set for Jan. 31. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317844741?&gn=Rubio%27s+Veep+Prospects+Could+Be+Fueling+Boycott+Of+GOP+Debate&ev=event2&ch=129828651&h1=Presidential+Race,Election+2012,2012,Republicans,Elections,It%27s+All+Politics,Veep+choices,Florida,GOP+debates,Politics,U.S.,Home+Page+Top+Stories,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141086784&c7=1014&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1014&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c21=2&v21=D%3Dc2&c31=131551086,129865776,129862096,129828651,126936508,126558672,125957078,125936742&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 14:19:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/rubios-veep-prospects-could-be-fueling-boycott-gop-debate-92864 East Coast Pumpkin Shortage Won't Dent The Canned Kind http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/east-coast-pumpkin-shortage-wont-dent-canned-kind-92863 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/npr_story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-05/pumpkin_wide.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>With Halloween rapidly approaching, you've probably heard about the <a href="http://www.npr.org/2011/10/01/140974705/pumpkins-at-a-premium-thanks-to-hurricane-irene">shortage of pumpkins</a> along the East Coast caused by the flooding rains of Hurricane Irene.</p><p>But while you may have troubling finding just the right shape or the right price for your jack o'lantern this year, there's good news for those looking ahead to the pies and cakes of Thanksgiving and Christmas.</p><p>Unlike in recent years, the shortage shouldn't extend to the canned pumpkin most often used for pumpkin pie.</p><p></p><p>"Everything looks good so far," says Roz O'Hearn, spokeswoman for <a href="http://inr.synapticdigital.com/libbys/pumpkin/">Libby's</a>. Libby's pretty much has the market cornered on the canned stuff.</p><p>The trick is, Libby's grows one kind of pumpkin — the <a href="http://lsned.com/facts/pumpkin-pie/">Dickenson</a> — on one big plot of land — 6,000 acres in Morton, IL. And so far, no natural disasters have threatened this year's crop. Harvesting began in August, and will continue through November.</p><p>But back in 2009, flooding rains across the Midwest made harvesting Libby's pumpkins virtually impossible. As a result, says O'Hearn, "you had acres and acres of pumpkins that couldn't be picked." And what followed was a major shortage.</p><p>Last year's harvest was "acceptable," she says, but buyers who were spooked by the year before quickly scooped up all the product as it appeared on store shelves. As a result, while there was enough for the 2010 holiday bakers, there was none leading up to this year's harvest.</p><p>The 2011 crop began hitting store shelves, by the way, just last week.</p><p>Why does it matter? It turns out that pumpkin isn't just a holiday food anymore. More and more consumers are using the canned stuff year round, including an apparently growing number of pet owners (including me) who feed canned pumpkin to their pets. There's even specialty companies who now market canned pumpkin just for <a href="http://www.luckyvitamin.com/p-95316-nummy-tum-tum-pure-pumpkin-for-dogs-100-organic-15-oz">pets</a>.</p><p>There's <a href="http://www.google.com/search?q=pumpkin+for+pets&rls=com.microsoft:en-us&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&startIndex=&startPage=1">dozens of websites</a> recommending the pumpkin-for-pets practice, to treat everything from constipation to diarrhea to weight loss. But is it really a good idea?</p><p>"It's certainly not uncommon," says <a href="http://faculty.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/faculty/ajfascetti/">Andrea Fascetti</a>, a veterinarian and professor of nutrition at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. "Some of it is vet-prescribed, some is owner-prescribed."</p><p>Fascetti says the primary benefit of pumpkin is that it's high in fiber, which is why it can aid in, ahem, "fecal issues."</p><p>In other cases (like mine) owners replace a portion of their pet's regular food with lower-calorie pumpkin to help our pudgy doggies lose weight without letting them feel like they're starving. A similar principal of bulking up on healthy stuff applies to people diets, too, by the way.</p><p>Fascetti says that's often a helpful strategy for owners with overweight animals. "People don't like to feel they're depriving their pets."</p><p>But she does offer some recommendations and warnings:</p><p>-- Always talk with your vet first before changing your pet's diet. Many dogs or cats may have food sensitivities that can make some human foods problematic. For example, pets with kidney problems need a diet low in phosphorous.</p><p>-- Don't substitute more than 10 percent of your pet's food with a human supplement. That could deprive them of the full array of vitamins and minerals provided in commercial pet foods.</p><p>--If you're going to use canned pumpkin, make sure it's the 100 percent pure pumpkin, not the pumpkin pie filling. Pie filling includes added sugar and spices that can make pets sick, so check the label carefully.</p><p>-- If you plan to puree your own fresh pumpkin, be aware that not all gourds are alike. A <a href="http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/contact-us/in-the-news/summer-hazards-interview/article-review-archive-8/kabocha-squash-neurotoxicity-in-dogs">recent post</a> on the site Pet Poison Helpline included a report of potential dog poisoning from a Kabocha squash. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317844738?&gn=East+Coast+Pumpkin+Shortage+Won%27t+Dent+The+Canned+Kind&ev=event2&ch=139941248&h1=The+Salt,healthy+diet,pets,Pumpkins,Food,Business,U.S.,News&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141085517&c7=1053&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1053&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c31=139941248,139913814,133210683,130650409&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 14:06:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/east-coast-pumpkin-shortage-wont-dent-canned-kind-92863 High Court Considers Disabilities Act Dispute http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/high-court-considers-disabilities-act-dispute-92874 <p><p>It could be "a mess," said Justice Stephen Breyer.</p><p>That sentiment seemed to sum up the intellectual somersaults performed by the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, as they grappled with the question of who is a minister and when a minister is exempt from federal laws that apply to everyone else.</p><p>The court's eventual decision will have profound implications for the nation's religious institutions and the people who work in them.</p><p>The case before the court began when Cheryl Perich, a tenured teacher at a parochial school, took disability leave after she was diagnosed with narcolepsy. When her doctor certified that she was ready to return to work, the school asked her to resign, and when she threatened to sue under the Americans with Disabilities Act, she was fired.</p><p>The Hosanna-Tabor church and school in Redford, Mich. does not dispute that it fired Perich for threatening to sue. The school maintains that, although Perich taught primarily non-religious subjects like math and science, she is a minister because she taught one religion course. Under church doctrine, ministers are required to resolve all disputes within the church. Thus, the church argues that Perich is exempt from the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act and has no right to go to court to win back her job.</p><p>But inside the Supreme Court, Douglas Laycock, the school's lawyer, immediately ran into a buzz saw when Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg noted that Perich had never been decommissioned as an officer of the church, and the school principal even recommended her to other parishes.</p><p>Justice Sonia Sotomayor then turned the questioning to whether religious institutions are immune from lawsuits when they fire a person on the basis of a pretext, asking "How about a teacher who reports sexual abuse to the government and is fired because of that reporting?" Doesn't society have a right to say certain conduct is unacceptable even when it occurs in a religious institution, she asked.</p><p>Observing that Perich was "fired simply for asking for a hearing," Justice Anthony Kennedy asked whether going through an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission hearing would have settled whether she was actually fired for a religious reason. When Laycock hesitated, Justice Antonin Scalia leaped to the rescue: "I think your point is that it's — it's none of the business of the government to decide what the substantial interest of the church is."</p><p>Chief Justice John Roberts sought a concrete definition of who counts as a minister. What about a "teacher who teaches only purely secular subjects, but leads the class in grace before lunch. Is that somebody who would be covered" as a minister? Laycock seemed to say that such a teacher would not be covered.</p><p>Roberts did not relent, noting that some churches view all its members as ministers. Laycock replied that, in cases like that the courts might determine how many secular duties the individual performs.</p><p>Justice Kennedy, exasperated, said that is exactly the question in Perich's case.</p><p>That prompted Justice Scalia to ask how a minister should be defined. A person is a minister, Laycock replied, if it is "per your job responsibilities to teach the doctrines of the faith."</p><p>Justice Ginsburg, unconvinced, noted that Perich's "duties at the school, did not change from when she's a contract teacher, and therefore not a minister" to when she became a commissioned minister. Indeed, Ginsburg continued, the majority of Lutheran teachers are lay ministers and not commissioned.</p><p>Returning yet again to Laycock's definition of minister, Justice Sotomayor seemed to suggest that Laycock's functionality test, where a minister is "anyone who teaches religion" would include even people who were not members of the faith. Justice Scalia asked Laycock if, "you'd be here anyway even if she hadn't been ordained," to which the response was, "yes."</p><p>Defending Perich's right to sue was the EEOC, represented by Assistant Solicitor General Leondra Kruger. She faced an even tougher battering from the justices after she asserted that Congress was perfectly within its rights in making it illegal to fire a fourth-grade teacher in retaliation for asserting her rights under the disabilities law.</p><p>Chief Justice Roberts probed that assertion, asking if "there [is] anything special about the fact that the people involved in this case are part of a religious organization." The "basic contours," responded Kruger, "are not different."</p><p>At this, Justice Scalia exploded. "That's extraordinary," he proclaimed, noting that the Constitution does not protect, say, labor unions. "But there, black on white in the text of the Constitution are special protections for religion."</p><p>Justice Alito asked whether the constitutional principle of separation of church and state was designed to prevent the government from selecting ministers. "No," responded Kruger, who also objected to a characterization that anti-discrimination laws in some way amount to "choosing the ministers."</p><p>Following Kruger to the lectern was Perich's lawyer, Walter Dellinger. He literally got one word out of his mouth before the justices pounced. Justice Elena Kagan asked Dellinger "why this commissioned minister does not count as a minister," to which he responded that she was not a minister because "she carries out important secular functions in addition to her religious duties."</p><p>Chief Justice Roberts was not persuaded, saying, "The Pope is a head of sate carrying out secular functions." Is he not a minister? Dellinger rejected Laycock's "categorical approach" as being both "over and under inclusive." When a religious organization enters the public arena, as it does when it sets up schools, it is involved with government rules, and those rules have to be applied with neutrality. In other words, there is no automatic exemption for those the church dubs ministers.</p><p>Whether the Supreme Court buys that argument remains to be seen. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1317852005?&gn=High+Court+Considers+Disabilities+Act+Dispute&ev=event2&ch=1070&h1=Religion,Education,U.S.&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=141089062&c19=20111005&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c21=2&v21=D%3Dc2&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></div></p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 14:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-10-05/high-court-considers-disabilities-act-dispute-92874